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Avatar universal

Lots of depression treatment, what else can I do?

Hello, a few months ago I decided to stop taking medications because I tried killing myself with them. I tried to overdose alone when everything felt like it was falling apart and there was no way out. Thankfully I got the help I needed and made a recovery. I also stopped going to therapy around the same time because events in my life made it not possible to maintain visits. It feels like my life has been absorbed by a constant daily life that demands sacrifice of my mental health and my mental health and the help I do try to get just didn't end up working, I feel like I'm completely out of options at this point. Is there any other options I can do to help myself that I'm simply not aware of?
5 Responses
Avatar universal
What have you tried?  And know that if one therapist didn't work, another might -- it's not really science, it's more of a healing art.  But you know, anything that helps you learn how to think in a different way can help, and if you tried to kill yourself with medication, even addiction groups might be helpful.  There's also natural medicine, meditation, exercise, in other words, radical lifestyle changes that for some people just put them on a positive direction in life rather the negative one they've been on.  Might be another dead end, but yeah, there's always something else to try.
Avatar universal
Hey Keredersa,

First of all – I am really sorry for your current mental state. It is never nice to feel as desperate and hopeless as you do at the moment! It was a good step to stop taking medication, when you tried to kill yourself with it! As Paxiled said before me, you still have many options that can possibly make you feel better. Sports can help a lot, especially team sports, where you get to interact with other people. While doing sports, your brain releases two different hormones – dopamine and serotonin. These might sound familiar to you – both of these have probably been given to you in form of psychotropic drugs. So sports can function just as this kind of medication.
Another option would be natural medication. Medication based on natural ingredients can often help in the same way as psychotropic drugs, but with a lot less side effects. A friend of mine, who is also strongly depressive, uses a pill called Sedariston. It’s completely natural and it calms you down almost immediately, it helps you to go to sleep, and in the long run, it brightens up your mood. At the same time it doesn’t have side effects. Maybe this is an appropriate way for you to cope with your problems in the future. I really hope that you find a way for you and you can be happy again!!
This sounds suspiciously like advertising, but in case it's not...
one of the biggest myths perpetrated by the supplement industry is that "completely natural" = completely safe.  It does not.  Hemlock and nightshade are natural, and deadly.  I'm not suggesting that this product is deadly, but any supplements could interfere with other treatments.  I would avoid taking any supplement, even one billed as "all natural," without consulting a doctor or pharmacist.

This product only contains
Melissa Leaf (Lemon balm) - side effects include increased appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dizziness, and wheezing
Valerian Root - side effects include headache, excitability, uneasiness, and even insomnia in some people.
St. John's Wort - this is the worst of them all. Side effects include worsening of psychotic symptoms in people with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. Taking St. John's wort can weaken many prescription medicines, such as antidepressants. This article states that it can have some of the same side effects as Prozac: https://www.webmd.com/depression/news/20150729/taking-st-johns-wort-for-depression-carries-risks-study#1

I don't think that I'd want to risk it if I had a history of severe depression - this, or any other product with similar ingredients.

I'd definitely look into Paxiled's advice - try a different therapist, for starters.  Look for someone who listens to your needs and your history.  Don't let the rest of your life demands put your mental health on the back burner.  It's far too important - YOU are far too important.

You really need to get a grip on natural medicine.  I don't know what you're reading and how thorough the studies were, but lemon balm and valerian are two of the safest things you can take.  This is just food, and yeah, if you eat too much cabbage you can cause a lot of trouble for yourself.  But if you take the appropriate amount in your meal, you won't.  Same with natural remedies.  Now, obviously, if someone is taking medication, you have to very careful whether taking other meds or natural remedies, and with some meds have to avoid certain foods as well.  As for St. John's Wort, nobody even knows what it does or how it works.  It's used as an anti-viral historically, but when meta studies were done in Germany a couple decades ago it worked as well as antidepressants with far fewer side effects.  The most common one is sun sensitivity.  I have no idea about this particular supplement the person mentioned above, I'm pretty dubious about most of the supplements people mention this site because they're almost all multi-level traded pyramid schemes or they just buy stuff on the open market and really don't know much about how to use the stuff.  As for having the same side effects as Prozac, sure, it could, but very few have been actually reported, the studies are mostly theoretical and are mostly done by pharmaceutical companies trying to get people not to take them so they'll take drugs instead.  Prozac, on the other hand, has so many documented cases of side effects and not just theoretical ones.  I'm not recommending this person take that particular herb -- I usually counsel people if they don't know much about any form of medicine to see a professional to guide them through it safely.  But really, guys, eating wheat has caused a whole lot more documented problems than taking those three herbs.  Nothing under the sun is completely safe -- someone above recommended athletics.  Ever noticed how many athletes get injured and end up like me, old and in pain?  Life is hard, but let's not avoid everything in it because of that.  We've all heard that doctors take an oath called the Hippocratic Oath, but few know that Hippocrates was largely an herbalist.  Lets not eliminate things that might help just because there is some risk, if we do that we have to eliminate all drugs and most food and that would not be a great thing to do.  Peace, all.
By the way, just to make the point, lemon balm and valerian are very mild sleep aids and anti-anxiety remedies (though the main use for lemon balm is in treating cold sores).  These should not be used if you're taking benzos, as they will both target GABA.  But if your problem is depression and not anxiety, taking anti-anxiety meds, or downers, even mild ones, can make it worse.  These are not antidepressants.  St. John's Wort has shown to help some with depression, but as with medication, no particular herb will work for most people.  Natural medicine is generally used with a combination of remedies including some that are not actually natural -- these three herbs are definitely just plants, but amino acids, which are actually pharmaceutical products in that they have to be isolated and are manufactured in a lab whereas natural amino acids are just components of protein, can be very helpful as well.  One of the first anti-anxiety meds used was tryptophan, a component of protein.  So it is true that many "natural" remedies are not made the way nature makes them, because nature does not make them in isolation.  But they have a whole lot fewer and less severe documented side effects than any drug on the market.  Aspirin, one of the first drugs we know of, having been created perhaps in ancient Greece, is an isolated component of a plant called white willow bark -- yeah, it comes from the bark of a willow tree.  No drug has probably killed more people than aspirin.  You'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who has been killed taking white willow bark, you'd have to take a ton of it, but it doesn't work so well, either.
I think people need to be very careful of supplements and natural medicine. It's unregulated and largely unstudied in a true scientific, controlled way.   Many synthetic medications we now take as name brand drugs started as a natural substance. Holistic/ homeopathy and supplements can impact us significantly, interact with other things, have side effects, etc. just like medications.   And self treating especially for something like depression that is severe enough that an attempt to take their life has occurred, is just flat out unwise.  While lots of people are very intelligent, that does not make them trained to be a doctor.  I couldn't recommend that to anyone unless they work with their medical practitioner to oversee it.  My two cents.
I hope the original poster comes back and lets us know how he is doing!!  
Sorry, Paxiled - I didn't mean to come off as anti-natural medicine, or really, anti-any of the ingredients.  I was responding under the premise that the person above is advertising, rather than a satisfied customer, promoting his brand as a cure-all.

I was demonstrating worse case scenario, and also the fact that "all natural" doesn't mean totally safe or that it won't interact with any other meds a person is taking.  It is always a good idea to discuss any supplements with a doc, particularly if you are taking or planning to take other medication.

I have mild anxiety and catastrophic thoughts that I don't control with pharma meds, but use other techniques, so I totally understand where you're coming from.  I just don't like it when someone promotes a specific, branded supplement as a cure-all, because I'm suspicious that they have a financial interest in doing so.
I get it-- it makes me really angry as well when people use this site to sell products.  We're all suffering and  very vulnerable here and when people take advantage of it, it just burns me.
Mom, once again, we're going to disagree.  For whatever reason, you are unbelieveably pro-medication.  You advocate it quite a bit, which is fine, it's what you believe, and often you're absolutely right.  I agree, anyone who is suicidal is not a candidate for self-treatment.  Great point.  The problem is, medication is not safe.  FDA approval has nothing to do with safety, it has to do with a balance of promoting the economy (allowing people to make tons of money selling drugs), going through certain hoops to prove a drug's benefits outweigh it's harms, because there are always harms, and that it's more effective than a placebo.  But FDA does not do any tests of its own, and it takes about a decade of being on the market before we learn whether a drug works or not and how harmful it is to the general public.  Remember, the testing is all done by companies trying to get approval so they can sell a product.  If they were just trying to help us, and only that, profit wouldn't be a factor and we wouldn't have so many lies out there.  As for natural medicine, there is so much misinformation out there both about what works, what's safe, but also that the FDA and FTC don't regulate it.  They absolutely do regulate it, have all the power they would ever need to do so, and don't do so because the FDA was created to sell drugs, not inexpensive unpatentable natural substances.  I've been through these wars, and they've been going on since the 1800's when allopathic physicians began to fight for financial supremacy against the then much more reliable and popular herbalists and homeopaths.  Now, you're right, we don't have the double blinded trials for natural remedies that we have for drugs because they can't be patented, but we do have a lot of research out there.  But more than that, we have centuries of use and writing about use while for pharmaceutical products we have only a snippet of history to go by, and so far the harm has been profound as well as the benefit.  Great care has to be taken with medication because it's extremely dangerous, but we have a required reporting system for hospitals and there just aren't that many reported incidents involving natural medicine.  The reports for drugs will fill buildings.  Whatever you believe or I believe isn't important, the facts are what is important, and with medicine facts are in short supply as so many experts disagree with one another.  To rule out entire forms of medicine is to limit the help people have access to.  For some, medication is the best thing.  For some, doing nothing is the best thing.  For some, natural medicine is the best thing.  The reason most of our drugs come from natural substances is because those things were working or they wouldn't have been studied to isolate the active components that became most of our drugs.  But isolating those ingredients not only made them stronger, quicker acting, and more effective, it also made them more dangerous.  It's a balance.  Statins came from Chinese mushrooms, because the Japanese researcher knew they worked and came up with Lipitor and got very rich.  Some people got their cholesterol down.  Some got crippled.  
I'm pro health of people suffering mental health issues.  And I recommend a lot of things besides medication.  However, I see supplements as medication.  Often unstudied in a scientific way and untested making lots of claims.  People have to be really careful of self medicating which is what one does when they pick up a supplement.  And careful when medicating in general.  I don't think anyone should enter into medication lightly but when it is warranted, it is also better than living through depression and anxiety that is to a degree that it impacts their life or has them considering ending their life.  Not everyone has a negative experience when being treated with medication and it can be a life saver for some.  I'm pro that!  :>)

So, I don't think there is a one shoe fits all approach to things and I try to answer every question as a unique experience someone is having with a unique answer to that.  

I hope that the original poster will come back and can get some help and answers for their personal situation.  
And by the way, it's not that I don't think that natural substances don't work.  It's that people need knowledgeable guidance in using them.  My mother in law owned a health food store in her small town.  It was her passion.  And she would recommend what people should and shouldn't take/do when you came into her store. You would realize how terrifying the thought of that is if you knew my mother in law.  :))  But I still use my arnica when I have a pain and it works great.  I'm not anti homeopathy, I'm anti people trying to treat themselves.  Because there are a lot of things to consider whenever you take any substance, made by a pharmaceutical company or made by a homeopathy/supplement (for profit as well) company or a plant from your back yard.  
Agree and very well said.  Homeopathy is very weird stuff, much weirder than herbal medicine.  By everything anyone can see, it's just a placebo.  There are no active ingredients.  But a homeopathic remedy is the only thing that helps me sleep after my Paxil tragedy.  As for your mother-in law, don't know about that.  I managed health food stores for 18 years, and there is an absolute ton of information out there about supplements if you want to read about it.  There is a ton of research as well.  I think the important things to distill from this discussion here are, you and I absolutely agree that anyone who is suicidal should not be using natural medicine.  They should be in a hospital.  I also agree that anyone who doesn't have a knowledge of natural medicine needs to see a professional, but that professional probably won't be a doctor because what I do know because of my legal experience is that most people do not know the history of medicine.  You learn it in law school, of all places, because doctors get sued a lot.  You also learn it if you study political science at the graduate level in American studies, as I did.  Not knowing this history can make one susceptible to false interpretations of the true way we got to this point and what the regulatory framework actually is.  Anyone who hasn't studied this doesn't know it, and it's a fascinating story.  The medicine we mostly know today was the bogus medicine of yesterday, much less effective and scientific than herbal medicine.  These are the folks who gave us leaches and bleeding, remember.  In the late 1800s the robber barons decided to back the system of medicine we have today because it is so much more profitable than natural medicine, but medication has not been very important in lengthening our lives or making us healthier.  The most important thing doctors ever did was to create the modern water treatment system.  From that point on, people living in areas with such systems have lived much longer lives.  Sterilization of tools was also very important, especially in childbirth, which also lengthened life because much of the life expectancy problem was in not surviving childbirth.  A lot of good has been done.  But a lot of harm has also been done.  There is a reason the US, the most medicated people on Earth, have the worst life expectancy, health outcomes, and overall well-being of all developed countries.  So yes, we have to be careful both about what we claim to be true and what we claim to be not true.  It doesn't help anyone to seek treatment either naturally or otherwise that is not in fact treatment.  Peace, Mom.  
973741 tn?1342346373
I am so sorry you were so low that you attempted to kills yourself.  I've not tried them although I've looked at some of the sites for it, but there are online counseling services.  If you are too busy for appointments, ,perhaps that is an option?  It is hard to tell from your post if you are still depressed and need significant help (suicide is a scary thing!) or if you are feeling much better but still need occasional mental health check ins.  How are doing overall these days?
I would still consider myself to be depressed right now, I spent the rest of the month trying to put my life back together and just further solidified the fact my life is in shambles and I pretty much have no control over it even when I thought I did at the start. I have considered to doing online counseling but I never found a place to start, I'm open to the idea of doing it though.
Avatar universal
I've been feeling similar to you, but I do keep trying. I am seeing s therapist weekly even though I don't like it. And I take my medication and it's very slowly getting better, but so slowly.
20854201 tn?1541624517
i really feel the same way, but  use medication properly. you might end up dying so be safe with them. but there is different medicines that you could try
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